Sakai Yoshinori, born in the rubble of the bomb blast at Hiroshima, anchored the relay of runners who brought the sacred flame from Olympia, Greece to Tokyo, Japan. Here he stands in National Stadium an instant after lighting the torch that officially opened the 1964 Olympics.
This jinbaori, made of wool, is said to have been owned by Date Masamune, daimyo of Sendai. The jinbaori's purpose was originally functional, being worn over armor for protection against cold and rain. Horizontally centered on the back of this jacket of thin wool is the bamboo and sparrow crest ("mon") of the Date family embroidered in gold.
Hollow clay figurine possibly used in health or death rituals.
These women are learning how to fire rifles in an effort to help the Japanese fight during WWII.
The first one held in April 1901 was heckled by police and right-wing elements.
One of the earliest extant examples of formal secular portraiture. The sitter is traditionally identified as Minamoto Yoritomo (1147-1199), the first shogun of Japan. After the death of the retired emperor Go-Shirakawa in 1192, Yoritomo received from the court the coveted title of Seiitaishogun (Great General Who Quells the Barbarians).
Inu Yasha poster at a bookstore.
A lacquer likeness of Mt. Fuji at a Fuji shrine
Portrait sculpture of Toyotomi Sutemaru (1589-1591), the first son of Toyotomi Hideyoshi (1537-1598), died when he was just two years old. Hideyoshi built Shounji in eastern Kyoto as the child's memorial temple. This portrait was enshrined there. Made of polychromed wood.
Depiction of Sakuma Shogen Sanekatsu (1570-1642) sitting in front of a bamboo screen facing his boy attendant. A warrior who first served Toyotomi Hideyoshi (1537-1598), Sakuma then seved three successive generations of Tokugawa shoguns: Ieyasu, Hidetada, and Iemitsu.
Photo of the huge red-light district in Tokyo known as Yoshiwara, which flourished for more than three hundred years.
A beautifully crafted scale model of the main temple at Todai-ji.
Futabayam Sadaji (1912-1968) remains a magic name in sumo. The 35th Yokozuna, his record of 69 straight wins still stands. This is a picture of him after he won the summer tournament in 1936.
Koi at Glover Garden in Nagasaki.
A wooden trellis at a Nara Shinto shrine being used to hang fortunes on.
A building at Eikan-Do shrine in Kyoto stands against a cloudy sky.
Even on the top of a mountain one can find a shrine.
Family name stamps for easy-to-read kanji.
Japanese make-up display.
Embroidery with glued-on gold or silver leaf. In Noh, costumes decorated in this technique are known themselves as nuihaku.
The kotsuzumi is a percussion instrument shaped much like an hourglass, with a thin middle and two flaring ends. Drumheads of leather mounted on iron rings are fitted on either end with the two drumheads connected by hemp cords. It is held with the left hand, placed on the right shoulder, and struck with the fingers of the right hand. This set is decorated with a spring design of rafts with cherry blossoms in gold maki-e on a black lacquered ground. This kotsuzumi is accompanied by a storage box decorated witha design in maki-e on black lacquer of running water and maple leaves. The design allude to many poems from the Heian period regarding the Tatsuta Riber, famous for the autumn foliage along its banks." - Kawakami Shigeki
Even though this picture was taken in the 60's, it could easily be replicated today. People in Tokyo have had to rely on a hefty push from railway employees to get them to work during rush hour for decades.
A general store counter full of cigarettes.